A Derbyshire dentist is calling for all schools in England to go sugar-free in a bid to combat high levels of tooth decay in children.
Matthew Lamb, principal dentist at Glendair Dental Practice in Alfreton, made the call after analysis by the Faculty of Dental Surgery (FDS) revealed some ‘shocking’ statistics.
In the last three years, there were more than 100,000 hospital admissions for children under the age of 10 due to tooth decay.
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Published today, the FDS says it believes that ‘all schools should be encouraged to become sugar-free’.
Mr Lamb, said: “It’s a daily occurrence for us to see children with holes in their teeth.
“Sadly we’ve been seeing decay rates amongst five-year-olds in the Yorkshire and Midlands area increasing year on year.
“There’s no point giving parents a dressing-down.
“It’s all about the relationship we build with our patients and we keep it calm and caring to ensure that the parent and child get on board.
“Prevention is the key to good dental health and oral hygiene and we make sure to communicate the importance of this.
“The concept of schools becoming sugar-free is a step in the right direction, but it needs to be a school and home initiative — everyone needs to pull together.
“Education is the way forward as it will enable people to make healthy choices that they can take forward into adulthood.
“Our advice here at Glendair Dental Practice is to keep sweet treats to meal times, consider sugar-free alternatives and maintain good oral hygiene.
“We need to stay aware of this situation and ensure that our children have the best chance to keep their teeth for life.”